Thursday, June 30, 2016

June OMG: Almost!

grab button for RedLetterQuilts
One of my favorite things about creating quilts is seeing a pile of  yummy fabric go from this... this! 
I'm only four rows short of meeting me June OMG...not too bad considering this is "growing" into a queen size quilt.  I admittedly mayyyy have been sidetracked by a few small, easy finishes in-between. I really wanted to get my jelly roll race quilted after my retreat and I enjoyed experimenting with my four patch baby blanket.  All these finishes, plus a studio make-over...I'd say June has been a very productive first month of summer vacation for this here teacher.  Thanks so much Heidi for creating this monthly goal setting linky for us. I may not have completed my goal in it's entirety, I did however make substantial progress and for that I am grateful...especially since that pile of fabric has been sitting around since January! Yes, January!!
We count our change and link our savings here next Wednesday July 6th!!
Click the picture to read more!
Check out past themes:
Val's Quilting Studio

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Four Patch Baby Blanket

Soooo I tried that layer cake pattern I highlighted for our Tuesday Archives Four Patch Linky.
Okay....first, it was quick. I had this little quilt top finished in three hours and I love how scrappy cute it came out.  But then I found myself  "all charged up" to just get it done. I thought: "Oh man, I'll have this made into a little throw blanket by the end of the day." I was envisioning something between a receiving blanket and a quilt. So proud to be trying something new, I pieced some leftover red minky from my stash (this is not the new part btw), threw on my Quilting Queen Cape and boldly ventured forward as I decided to just quilt the top and back together without any batting. Easy Peasy. "I was going to have this one done in no time!" I thought...
Measures 36" x 42"
HAHAHAHA! Oh that Quilting Queen Cape disintegrated pretty quick! Envision quilt falling to ground as rivet breaks on long-arm frame, midway through row one of pantograph. Hour later, I return from quit ladies house with new part. Frame fixed. Quilt reloaded. I restart confident I can still create "my quilt in a day!" HAAHAHAHAA!! Half way through second of only three rows of a panatograph I might add, long-arm stops working all of sudden. Need a new power cord. Have to wait till next day for new one. Anyone else seeing Murphy's Law coming into action here?? LOL!!
Funny, as I sit here writing this post, no quilting queen cape in sight, I am grateful that my "mission" was still accomplished.   I mean, I really  do like the "weight" of the blanket. Since I didn't use batting, it "feels" like a blanket that will definitely be cozy soft for wrapping a wee baby in...just like a receiving blanket. But, it's more wrinkly than I really like. The red minky came up through the stitches...I'm thinking this is because there was no batting??  I think the quilting may have been too dense and now in reflection,  probably just a stitch in the ditch between the squares would have been fine. But, it all came out in the wash and there was no color run!! YEAH! As I tell my students (Note: they are only seven), we learn what we like and don't like, by trying new things. So, Okay, okay,  my simple, "make a quilt in a day" didn't happen but I learned that I like my flannel receiving blankets just fine and my quilts made with batting. Oh! and I don't need that Quilting Queen Cape.  Time certainly is not wasted when lessons are learned and our strengths are reaffirmed. Besides, this will make a cute baby gift for a co-worker or school auction basket. So it'a a win-win. Lucky for me:
Happiness is:
I'm sure I'll feel rejuvenated after a walk with my buddy. Thanks for sharing my adventure with me.
Val's Quilting Studio

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Tuesday Archives #121: Four Patch Quilts (+Tutorial)

Hello! Hello! And...Happy Tuesday Archives. 
The linky party that let's you rejuvenate OLD blogging posts.
Val's Quilting Studio

This week's theme is: FOUR PATCH Quilts

Here's an easy four patch quilt pattern I found that is a little bit more "wonky" than your tradition pattern. But, Oh how I love the results! And I seriously think this can be finished in the matter of a few hours....just the break I need from my humongous queen size quilt I've been making.
Click HERE to hop over to the Moda Bake Shop for the pattern. 
In fact, I have this Lori Holt layer cake just waiting to be made into a quilt.

Val's Quilting Studio

Friday, June 24, 2016

Studio Reorganized & One Tip

While I should be working on my raw edged flowers and nine patches, I mean after all, they are my June OMG....but noooo instead: SQUIRREL!!! I got back from my retreat all inspired to rearrange my entire studio! (I have no idea why!) I created a larger cutting/quilting area:

Jackson was a great help! NOT! LOL!!Okay, see that big sectional in the background....
well I sold half of it ( for fabric!! LOL!!) and...

... moved my little table and chairs over there (so cozy) :
My mom would call and after the third time of dropping the phone while she was talking, she asked: "What are you doing?" Reply: "Rearranging my fabric!" She laughed reminding me that I do that every reflection, I guess she's right. But I can't tell ya how rejuvenating it is. So I spent another day rearranging ALL my fabric. Truth be told, I was hoping to go through all my fabric in hopes of reopening my Etsy shop and getting rich selling my fabric stash...LOL!! NOT!...I found myself ooohhh and auughhhh way too much and only ended wishing I had more time to create.
I emptied my entire glass cabinets and here's how I always seem to end up organizing:

I organize my STASH in a RAINBOW spectrum.

My one tip: whether it be my thread or fabric organize them in a rainbow order. I start with green. 
Why haven't I finished this Metro-Rings quilt?? Until then, I 'll enjoy it here.

Here is my stash revamped: 

And now that I'm all reorganized...I got back to creating. I ending up backing my crazy jelly roll race classroom quilt with these pearl rings I found in my stash. I quilted it with a bubble pantograph.
Today I plan to sew a green binding on it and put it in my back-to-school pile.

Last thing I want to do is organize my WIP hand projects as inspired by Karen who blogs at Moose Bay Muses especially as our July will be a busy month filled with travels and family. She made these adorable vinyl bags and though I love their colored zippers, I'm pretty sure mine will be organized into gallon-size ziploc bags, put into a cute basket, of course. Thanks for the inspiration Karen.
So that's what I've been up to this Etsy shop reopened...but never the less, reinspired am I.
Join us! Click picture to read about our Tuesday linky.
Val's Quilting Studio

Thursday, June 23, 2016

I-Spy Happy Mail!

Yep! Going to the mailbox this week is as fun as Christmas morning!

My banquet table is overflowing and with only three more packages to arrive,
 I find myself looking forward to "organizing" these into your return envelopes. 
Thank you so very much to everyone who has participated in our I-Spy Swap!
Look below to see how blogging has connected us from all over the United States.
(My home is the red dot, yours the green dots.)
I had no idea so many of you are on the East coast!
Very cool huh! Well, I'm now beginning to feel like that kid on Christmas morning, as I've sat here  anxiously waiting to see of what's inside those just arrived I-Spy packages. 
Until tomorrow....I'm off to open them and enjoy!

This was fun!

Val's Quilting Studio

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Tuesday Archives #120: Farmer's Wife Quilts

Hello! Hello! And...Happy Tuesday Archives. 
The linky party that let's you rejuvenate OLD blogging posts.
Val's Quilting Studio

This week's theme is: FARMER'S WIFE

Many of you already know, I'm a Farmer's Wife drop-out. (Yep! Click HERE to read my archived post from 2014, where I turned lemons into lemonade!) I am happy to report that this little quilt has since been gifted to a new mom as a baby gift and she loved it!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Recipe for a fun retreat!

Thanks to everyone for your well wishes on having a great retreat! I'd read your comments while at retreat and just smile at the wonderful virtual quilting guild we have here among us. So here's the recipe to a great four days away...sewing!
One very nice hotel located in a small mountain community.

Rainy, windy weather outside.

A large room filled with quilters.

Your own little spot. 

Now mix in a little fun and laughter!
Yep! EVERY time you used your seam ripper you had to pay a nickel. I think I put $1.50 worth of nickels into that there little jar. But, darn didn't win the jackpot. Boy that would have totally bumped up my Piggy Bank Challenge contents huh! Bummer!

Using trader's dice, we played using fat quarters. I walked away with these six.
Lucky me, three that I can contribute to the I-Spy swap! This was a fun game.

Oh man, and what is quilter's retreat without a jelly roll race!
I would have never been able to do this without the help of my friend Lori.
Seriously this was kinda hard. I mean I was sweating and my machine was shacking!

But I finished this wonderful little masterpiece in 39 minutes and 36 seconds!
(I was trying to cross my eyes in this picture, but I obviously didn't accomplish that.)
I won a charm pack for coming in second place. YEAH!!

And soon after I received the nickname: "half inch" as my seams fluttered like ruffles as they were soooooo big!! LOL!! One participant even asked: "Don't you have a quarter inch foot." I responded: "Yep. and even an automated 1/4 inch setting." The room rolled in laughter and thus my nickname was created! (Go ahead look funny!)

It may have turned out smaller than everyone elses, but those seams aren't coming apart!  I'm going to add a black border, back it with some minky and it will make the perfect classroom reading quilt don't ya think. The kids will love it. Oh! Everyone's cracking up in this picture below because my neighbor in the white announced I should turn mine around so we could see all my pretty ruffles!
Fabrics used from left to right: Chipper by Tula Pink, Eden by Tula Pink, Polka Dot by Moda, Hello Darling by Bonnie and Camille.

We both worked on our raw edged flowers/nine patch quilts. Lori layered her flowers in threes and used all pinks and browns.  Pretty huh!

My flowers have four layers and I used a lot of Kim Diehl fabrics and some wovens.
Both of these will be queen size quilts and I think we are both about half way done. Pre-cutting all our flowers and nine patch squares saved the day for sure!

We all went home very happy campers and now need to get unpacked and set up at home.
Thanks again for your well wishes and as you can see, my retreat experience was fun and productive! (Though I don't think we'll get a lot of empathy from our husbands as we now complain about be so tired. Seriously, we never went to bed before midnight!) Speaking of fun. Please do share your favorite retreat memory or/and if you have ever participated in a crazy jelly roll race. 
Tomorrow we'll be rejuvenating  Farmer's Wife posts.
Val's Quilting Studio

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Off to RETREAT!!!

My quilty friend is due to stop by and pick me up later this morning, and LOL! this is how we're feeling! The retreat doesn't officially start until tomorrow at 10am...but once we found out we can get into the sewing room by 1:00 we said: "Let's go!"
Image result for car loaded for quilt retreats

I'm almost packed and find myself anxious to start sewing as I have literally spent the last two days  cutting and cutting and cutting more fabric. Blah! My arm is sore. But! I have two quilt kits all ready to go. (Plus what seems like a billion other little projects I won't even get to...LOL... 
But we never know what mood we'll be in will we.) 
I'm looking forward to having a wonderful variety of quilty creations to share with you next week and just wanted to drop in to wish you a great rest of the week and Happy Father's Day celebrations.
REMINDER: The deadline to mail your I-Spys quares is June 22nd.
Val's Quilting Studio
Still time to rejuvinate your Flag posts here.
Val's Quilting Studio
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